Policy Update Oct 13, 2021

NPCA position on H.R. 149, H.R. 250, and H.R. 4706

NPCA shared the following positions ahead of a legislative hearing held by the U.S. House Natural Resources National Parks, Forests, and Public Lands Subcommittee scheduled for October 14th, 2021.

H.R. 149 – Peter J. McGuire Labor Day Landmark Act: NPCA supports this legislation, which would create a National Historic Landmark designation for the Peter J. McGuire Memorial and Gravesite. The site is far more than the final resting place of a giant in the labor history of the United States. It is a place to remember the great challenges the nascent labor movement faced in the second half of the 19th Century and how Peter J. McGuire organized community to improve working conditions. McGuire saw workers not only as economic beings, but also as family, community members, and as citizens of democratic change. This site helps the public understand how important McGuire, and the movement he spurred, were.

H.R. 250 – January 8th National Memorial Act: NPCA supports H.R. 250, which would establish the January 8th National Memorial in Tucson, Arizona, as an affiliated area of the National Park System. This memorial will help the public understand a tragic event in our nations history. Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was meeting with constituents in a grocery store parking lot on Jan. 8, 2011, when a lone gunman opened fire at the “Congress on Your Corner” event in northwest Tucson. Six people were killed: Christina-Taylor Green, 9; Dorothy Morris, 76; U.S. District Judge John M. Roll, 63; Phyllis Schneck, 79; Dorwan Stoddard, 76; and Gabe Zimmerman, 30 (a Congressional aide). Thirteen others were shot but survived — Giffords, Bill Badger, Ron Barber (who later became a Congressman), Ken Dorushka, James Eric Fuller, Randy Gardner, Suzi Hileman, George Morris, Mary Reed, Pam Simon, Mavanell Stoddard, Jim Tucker and Kenneth Veeder. The Memorial has been constructed with support of private funds on Pima County property and will be managed by Pima County. This bill authorizes the Park Service – the most appropriate federal agency to participate in this public-private collaboration – to help prepare a management plan and provide other technical assistance.

H.R. 4706 – Blackwell School National Historic Site Act: NPCA supports this legislation, which would designate the Blackwell School site in Marfa, Texas as a National Historic Site. This site commemorates the pride and resiliency of the Mexican American heritage of the region, as well as uncovers the painful past of educational segregation in our country. The Blackwell School site represents the social constructs of American society along the southern US border during each decade of its operation, and despite the ubiquity in the late 19th and early 20th centuries of schools like Blackwell, it is one of only a few remaining structures. This facility remains in good condition, with an active local coalition supporting its preservation with a desire to connect this story to the bigger, ongoing national conversation around identity, power and what it means to be an American.